Caritas Bosnia and Herzegovina, within the EU funded project SOCIETIES, signed the agreements for co-financing of 6 social entrepreneurship and community based services initiatives of civil society organizations for people with disabilities and mental health problems. The Signing ceremony was organized on Wednesday, 2 August 2017, at the EU info center in Sarajevo.
Through the project SOCIETIES – Support Of CSOs In Empowering Technical skills, Inclusion of people with disabilities and EU standards in South East Europe, Caritas Network in Southeast Europe and its partners seek to address the problems faced by people with disabilities and mental disorders, primarily through the support of civil society organizations that protect and care for this marginalized population. Project SOCIETIES is funded within the EU Civil society facility and media program 2014-2015, with a purpose to improve the capacities of CSOs in South East Europe (SEE) in managing social inclusion processes and in promoting social inclusion policies, through an efficient dialogue with Public Authorities during the decision-making processes.
One of the activities of the project is the sub-granting scheme or financial support of the development of social services in community and the small business initiatives managed by the CSOs, targeting people with disabilities and mental disorders. In regarding, Caritas Bosnia and Herzegovina announced a tender for the allocation of funds and 80 project proposals were received. The External Evaluation Committee made a decision on the allocation of funds in the total amount of EUR 86,879.39 to the following initiatives:
- “Quick Elmo” cleaning service – Cantonal Mutual Assistance Society for Mental Distress “Apel”, Sanski Most;
- Greenhouse cultivation and sale of herbs and flowers – ProReha Association – Center for professional rehabilitation, retraining and training of persons with disabilities and other hard to employ groups, Vogošća;
- Only persistent and courageous go ahead – Association “Humanitarian organization Lotosice”, Tuzla;
- Inclusive entrepreneurship – “Zajednički put” Foundation, Prijedor;
- Work Training and Employment of Disabled Persons – ROZOSI – Association of Parents and Children with Special Needs “Vedri osmijeh”, Mostar;
- Book for the Future – Association for the Protection and Promotion of Mental Health In Spe, Mostar.
During the signing ceremony, it was emphasized that a large number of project proposals submitted for co-finance show a large-scale need, and that it is necessary to continue to act in the area of protection of rights and improvement of the position of persons with disabilities and persons with mental health problems in Bosnia and Herzegovina.
Local grass-root organizations will use the resources provided by the European Union to work on the activities for the benefit of people with disabilities and mental health problems for the next year, year and a half, in order to reduce their social exclusion.
Project SOCIETIES is being implemented in five Western Balkan countries, which are in the pre-accession process towards the European Union. In Bosnia and Herzegovina, it is being implemented in cooperation with the Mutual Assistance Society for the Mental Disorder of TK “Fenix” and with the support of the Federal Ministry of Health, the Ministry of Health and Social Welfare of the Republic of Srpska and the Mental Health Center Vitez.